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User Manuals Made Easy

If a consumer were to read your instructions first before purchasing, would they still buy your product? Very few product companies pay close attention to the User Manual and the effects it can have on the brand experience.

So, where do you start when rethinking this part of your product? I’ve outline some steps below that focuses on areas of importance and the effects of a smarter User Manual.



Importance of People & Product

• Spend time observing how people interact with product
• Rethink product functionality to simplify
• Improve collaboration with product designers, engineers
and quality assurance



Assemble Smart into Your Communication

• Keep communication content simple
• Incorporate cognitive design
• Less words, more intuitive diagrams (multilingual)
• Explore creative ways to use, guide and instruct
– Online tutorials
– Smart phones with code scanning
– Post on YouTube or Vimeo
– Interactive Apps
• Plan for a range of age groups and cultures
• Design feedback into the program
• Keep manuals updated with printed dates



Control the Conditions of Learning

• Product feels smarter than the competition
• Customers are more likely to complete the instructional process
• Overall product feels well thought-out



Enormous Benefits from Steps 1, 2 & 3

• Reduces liabilities
• Improves the company & product brand experience
• Saves considerable amount of money in Customer Service,
distribution space, product replacement and shipping
• Improves Customer Service satisfaction
• Happier customers result in referrals
• Better product performance
• Life of product will last longer through limited warranty
• Value of the product increases
• Customer will purchase your brand again


“Next time you read a User Manual, evaluate how it got you through the process. ” -Stephen Cascio



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